Sunday, October 20, 2019

Fascinating Court Ruling

10/11/19 National Review: Federal judge rules that an AR-15 lower receiver is not a receiver requiring serialization and transfer as a firearms.  The guy who provoked this was running a factory selling complete AR-15s to prohibited persons in California.


  1. No, the guy who was doing this was selling barrels, stocks, trigger groups, uppers, etc.

    And 80% lowers.

    And renting CNC machinery to complete the 80% lowers.

    He was not completing the 80% lowers himself.

  2. Renting is a no-no. Ten owners might be able to justify it for each of them. Where did you get that version? It makes more sense. The CNN article described pulling down a lever, which is defintely not an 80% receiver.

  3. Renting wasn't a no-no, until just a few years ago when BATF issued a policy letter without following proper regulatory process.

  4. Ammoland has an article that may shed more light on this subject; it seems BATFE regulations weren't crafted very carefully, leaving loopholes that a clever lawyer can utilize, which Roh's lawyer did. Here's a relevant part of the article:

    "Joseph Roh had assets. He hired a competent attorney, Gregory Nicolaysen. reports Nicolaysen grilled ATF officials on what the definition of a firearm is, according to their regulations.

    The judge ruled BATFE had not followed proper procedures when they created the regulations, and the definition of what was a firearm was unconstitutionally vague.

    According to, BATFE officials agreed to a plea deal to stop the judges ruling from having any legal effect. A plea deal would not require the judge to make a ruling; the tentative ruling would not become a part of the case. From

    At issue in Roh’s case was whether the law could fairly be interpreted to apply to just the lower receiver of the AR-15, as the ATF has been doing for decades.

    To rule otherwise “would sweep aside more than 50 years of the ATF’s regulation of AR-15s and other semiautomatic firearms,” prosecutors wrote prior to the judge’s order."

    I reckon bureaucrats at the BATFE shouldn't be making any regulations at all, that's the job of the Congress, but they've largely relinquished their duty & let the unelected paper-pushers do as they like. I also reckon that many of the BATFE regs are unconstitutional, but our old constitution doesn't mean much anymore- it's just a dusy old document in a museum, not the law of the land these days. YMMV.